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On This Day: April 24

Aviation events for April 24

1909: Wilbur Wright makes five flights in Centocelle, Italy with King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy present. During one flight, a Universal News Agency cameraman accompanies him and takes the first motion pictures from an airplane in flight.
1911: Lts. M. Longmore and C. R. Samson are the first British Royal Navy officers to qualify as pilots, after just two month’s training.
1913: O. Gilbert flies a TK 825 km from Villacoublay, France to Vitoria, Spain in 8 hours and 23 minutes.
1917: Lt. Col. William “Billy” Mitchell becomes the first U.S. Army officer to fly over German lines.
1929: Royal Air Force Squadron Leader A G Jones-Williams and Flight Lieutenant N H Jenkins take off in a Fairey Long-range Monoplane from RAF Cranwell in Lincolnshire, England on the first nonstop flight between Britain and India. Strong headwinds impede forward progress and the crew decide to land in Karachi, Pakistan 50 hours later.
1944: The first B-29 Superfortress arrives in China, beginning the build-up by the United States Army Air Forces' 20th Air Force for a strategic bombing offensive against Japan.
1946: First flights of the first Soviet designed and built jet aircrafts, MiG-9 and Yak-15, are made. A member of the company test team for the Yak-15, Olga Yamschikova, is probably the first woman to fly a turbojet-powered aircraft when she flies in 1947.
1946: Winged Cargo Inc. opens an unusual freight service in which goods are carried in a Waco CG-4A glider towed by a DC-3.
1957: Heli-logging pioneer Columbia Helicopters is founded in Portland, Oregon.
1962: 1962/April/24 - First A-12 (924) engine test runs completed, high speed taxi tests. Pilot Lou Schalk. Accidental lifts off for a few seconds (first actual flight but not considered official).
1967: Cosmonaut Colonel Vladimir Komarov suffers history’s first in-flight spaceflight fatality as the parachutes on the Soyuz 1 spacecraft fail during its return to earth. The crash was the culmination of many technical failures that forced the flight control director to abort the mission after 18 orbits.
1970: China launches its first space satellite, Dong Fang Hong I using a Long March I rocket. The satellite’s weight exceeds that of the first four satellites launched by Russia, the United States, France and Japan combined
1971: Soyuz 10 spacecraft docks with the world’s first space station, Salyut 1. The cosmonauts on board are forced to return to earth without entering the station, however, due to a faulty hatch.
1980: Operation Eagle Claw, an attempt by the U.S. Navy to rescue the 52 hostages being held in the U.S. Embassy in Teheran, fails miserably. Eight servicemen are killed as one of the eight Sikorsky RH-53Ds used in the operation crashes in a sand cloud, while another crashes into a C-130 Hercules on the ground in Iran.
1984: First flight of the Dornier SeaStar D-ICDS.
1990: Space Shuttle Discovery launches from Cape Canaveral, Florida on mission STS-31 carrying the Hubble Space Telescope.
1992: A US Air Force C-130 Hercules transport aircraft on an anti-narcotics mission over Peru is attacked by Peruvian Air Force Sukhoi Su-22s.
2001: A Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV takes off from Edwards Air Force Base for a nonstop flight to Australia in 23 hours, the longest ever flight by an unmanned aircraft and the first UAV to cross the Pacific.

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